Dressage riders from Market Overton compete in Olympics

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A talented pair of dressage riders from Market Overton will be flying the flag for the county in a national sports competition.

Richard Wilson and Carolyn Shore, 46, will be heading to Sheffield in August to take part in the Special Olympics - the largest sporting event in the UK for people with a learning disability.

The Special Olympics attracts around 2,600 athletes from across the country, who take part in a variety of sports and through participation organisers hope that competitors will be given confidence and social skills.

The pair, who are residents at The Lodge Trust, will be representing the East Midlands Riding for the Disabled Association, and are thrilled to be taking part.

Richard, 31, said he was “very excited” about taking part in the competition and that he was going to ‘try his best’.

Kate Tomson, country park manager at The Lodge Trust, a residential home for adults with learning disabilities, said: “We are very proud that they have the opportunity to represent Great Britain in something which we deem to be very important.”

As well as taking part in the dressage at the games, the pair will be competing in a ‘countryside challenge’ event which asks them to complete tasks such as ‘riding around a duck pond’, ‘closing a gate’ and ‘competing a figure of eight’.

Kate added that preparing for the countryside challenge teaches the pair about vital skills they need to know when riding outside,

Both residents have been riding with the Mount Group, Riding for the Disabled Association, in Melton Mowbray for several years, and the group selected them to take part in the Special Olympics.

Carolyn will be riding her horse Mizen in the Special Olympics, whom she had ridden for three years, while Richard will be taking part with Gypsy Rose, who he has used to compete with for around a year.

But before Carolyn and Richard can take part in the Olympics, which takes place between August 7 and 12, they need to raise £1,500 to pay for accommodation during their stay and for kit they need for competing.

To raise the cash they have been baking cakes and selling them in the Lodge Trust’s cafe and they will be setting up a stall at the residential home’s Family Fun Day event tomorrow, which will also sell equestrian themed treats and
gifts.

The Lodge Trust Family Fun Day takes place between 10.30am and 
3pm.